Image for Furniture Parquetry Bureau A Cylindre Made by Reisner

Historic Pieces

Many of the pieces of furniture throughout the Abbey have incredible stories to tell. 

For example, this parquetry bureau a cylindre, made by Jean-Henri Reisner in 1774, was used by Lord John Russell. He was twice Prime Minister during the reign of Queen Victoria and was thought to use this desk to write his speeches to Parliament. The German-born Jean-Henri Riesener became cabinet maker to Louis XVI of France and was a favourite of Marie-Antionette. The bureau bears the mark of the Tuileries which indicates that it was formerly part of the French Royal Collection. 

Other pieces are notable for their construction and design. In the Book Room you will find a metamorphic library table which transforms into a set of steps to reach the books on higher shelves. These were produced by the London firm of Mayhew & Ince and cost the 5th Duke sixteen guineas in 1791. 

On your walk around Woburn Abbey look out for our Boulle pieces including two writing desks, which date from the 17th century. Boulle work is a skillfully cut combination of brass and tortoiseshell, named after French maker André-Charles Boulle. You will also find two Boulle marriage caskets and stands, which were made in 1812 by the English maker Thomas Parker and are currently displayed in the Long Gallery. 

Image for Furniture The Blue Drawing Room

The Blue Drawing Room

The State Suite, still in situ in The Blue Drawing Room, was commissioned from Samuel Norman around 1755. This room is also home to an exceptional 18th-century desk and cartonnier from the furniture maker Phillipe Claude Montigny. A cartonnier is a filing cabinet placed at the end of the desk. 

The pair of pier glasses in this room were designed by Whittle and Norman, interior designers commissioned by the 4th Duke in the 1750s. The large panes of glass would have cost more that the frames at that time. 

Elsewhere in the room is a cabinet with Japanese lacquer panels, attributed to Adam Weisweiler, which dates from around 1790. 

Events & Exhibitions

Image for Humphry Repton: Art & Nature for the Duke of Bedford

Humphry Repton: Art & Nature for the Duke of Bedford

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Open to the public between 23rd March and 28th October 2018, the new exhibition explores the fascinating relationship between Repton and one of his greatest clients.
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Summer Holiday Children's Activities

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There's plenty to keep younger visitors entertained at Woburn Abbey during the summer holidays, two trails, crafts and games!
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National Afternoon Tea Week

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Renowned speaker Gillian Perry will talk you through the social history of Afternoon Tea. This English custom was popularised by the 7th Duchess of Bedford, Anna Maria at Woburn Abbey.
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Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
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Bat Walk

This event has now sold out but we have more dates available.
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Life in a Noble Household

Discover what it was like to work in a great Ducal household from the 17th to the 20th centuries.
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Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
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Terrarium Workshop

Bedford Estates Head Gardener, Tom Abbott will show you how to create a terrarium which you will then get to take home.
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Bat Walk

Take an exclusive tour of the Woburn Abbey Gardens at night and learn about the nocturnal activities of the bats living in the gardens.
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Woburn Abbey triathlon

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Now in its eleventh year, the Woburn Abbey Triathlon - organised by registered charity tri for life, and delivery partner, Human Race events - has raised over £2.4m for its charity partners.
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Woburn Abbey Honey Festival

Join us in a celebration of everything honey, set against the stunning backdrop of Woburn Abbey and Gardens.
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Dining Like A Duke

From the earliest times, the consumption of food has evolved from the basic requirements to survive into one of the grandest expressions of wealth and style.
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Adam Frost: Intro into Garden Design

This event has now sold out - please check back at a later date as we are planning similar events to this in the future.
Image for NSPCC Luxury Gift Fair Evening Champagne Reception

NSPCC Luxury Gift Fair Evening Champagne Reception

This exclusive Evening Champagne Reception will be hosted by Her Grace, The Duchess of Bedford. Browse over 50 stalls of inspiring gift ideas whilst enjoying a glass of Champagne and canapés. All proceeds from the event tickets will go to the NSPCC.
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NSPCC Luxury Gift Fair

The NSPCC Luxury Gift Fair is an annual event and a highlight of the Woburn calendar.
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Off Road Deer Park Tours

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Join the Deer Keepers for a 1.5 hour tour of the Woburn Abbey Deer Park where you will able to get up close to the beautiful deer.
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Treasury of Trees Walking Tour

Join us for a guided walk in our Quercetum and Pinetum areas of the gardens to discover our treasury of trees.
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Treasures of the Library & Afternoon Tea

Enjoy a private view of some of the treasures housed within Woburn Abbey’s extensive library collection.
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Brunch with Queen Victoria

Follow in the footsteps of the Queen and her 1841 visit to Woburn Abbey. Enjoy a delicious lunch in the Duchess' Tearoom followed by an in-depth talk with time to explore the Abbey at your leisure.
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Housekeeper's Know-how

Ever wondered what it takes to preserve and care for a great stately home and its treasures? While we’re closed for the winter, our housekeeping team invites you behind-the-scenes for an exclusive glimpse into what it takes to complete Woburn Abbey’s annual ‘deep-clean’
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Christmas Flowers with Jonathan Moseley

A masterclass in Christmas flower-arranging with floral expert, Jonathan Moseley.
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Woburn Abbey Garden Show 2019

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Early Bird rates can now be booked on-line for the Gardeners' Garden Show.